• According to the Law: Who does the Law Recognize as a Solo Parent?

    Who can apply for parental leave as a solo parent, and what should be a single mom’s next step?
    by Atty. Cecilia L. Real .
  • mom and babyQ:
    “Great Morning Atty. Real!  In the parental leave for a solo parent, who falls under the category “solo parent”?

    I’m a single mother and I have already applied for my benefits. I have received a letter from DOLE stating that all single parents must have parental leave and a flexible schedule as much as possible. I forwarded that email from DOLE to my employer, and they said that they will review first and will coordinate this to their lawyer. It has been a few months and until now, even with my constant follow up, I still haven’t received any feedback. I had an agreement with them that in the meantime while they are checking, I will be using my Vacation Leaves first and will offset this with the parental leaves when they have clarified with DOLE.

    How long should I wait for feedback? What should be my next step?” - Mommy-in-waiting


    A:
    Dear Mommy-in-waiting,

    Section 6 of the Act defines who is a solo parent; among them:

    • An unmarried mother/father who has preferred to keep and rear his/her child/children instead of having others care for them or give them up to a welfare institution;
    • Any family member who assumes the responsibility of head of family as a result of the death, abandonment, disappearance, or absence that lasts for at least one (1) year


    Under this Section, even a father may be considered a solo parent “if he is left solo or alone with the responsibility of parenthood” due to any of the following:

    • Death of spouse
    • Detention or service of sentence of the spouse for a criminal conviction for at least one year
    • Physical and/or mental incapacity of spouse as certified by a public medical practitioner
    • Legal separation or de facto separation from spouse for at least one year provided that he is entrusted with the custody of the children
    • Declaration of nullity or annulment of marriage as decreed by a court or by a church, provided that he is entrusted with the custody of the children
    • Abandonment of spouse for at least one year

     

    Click here to read more.

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